Published on: January 13, 2017
by BrightFocus Foundation:
New research is shedding light on what drives the vast gender disparity in Alzheimer’s – men have a 1 in 11 chance of developing the disease, but yet for women the odds are 1 in 6 even when accounting for their longer life span.
Supported by a grant from BrightFocus Foundation’s Alzheimer’s Disease Research program, a team of scientists at the University of Luxembourg has discovered that a particular gene could be an important clue to dramatic gender differences in the rate and expression of Alzheimer’s disease. According to lead scientist Dr. Enrico Glaab, the gene may help identify targets for anti-Alzheimer treatments in the future.
The researchers report that a gene, ubiquitin-specific peptidase 9 (USP9), appears to provide some protection against the disease in men through its interaction with another gene that helps regulate tau proteins. Tau, like amyloid-beta (Aβ), is a protein that is present in the normal-functioning brain, but found in higher levels in the Alzheimer’s brain.
The team found that blocking the USP9 gene significantly reduced the activity of the tau gene. From this evidence comes the hope that USP9 could be an effective target for future therapies. While encouraging, more research is needed before it will be possible to develop anti-Alzheimer’s drugs based on this principle.
Thanks to the ongoing support of our partner Brain Canada, and The Citrine Foundation of Canada, Women’s Brain Health Initiative’s newest edition of MIND OVER MATTER has just been published. Loaded with interesting science-based articles, MIND OVER...
On December 2nd, in celebration of Women’s Brain Health Day, join thousands of others and take part in the Stand Ahead® Memory Challenge to stand up against research bias and stand ahead for women’s brain...
YOU’RE INVITED! On December 2nd, the second annual Women’s Brain Health Day, take the memory challenge and help us combat brain-aging diseases that disproportionately affect women. Join CTV’s Pattie Lovett-Reid and Anne-Marie Mediwake, along...
The material presented through the Think Tank feature on this website is in no way intended to replace professional medical care or attention by a qualified practitioner. WBHI strongly advises all questioners and viewers using this feature with health problems to consult a qualified physician, especially before starting any treatment. The materials provided on this website cannot and should not be used as a basis for diagnosis or choice of treatment. The materials are not exhaustive and cannot always respect all the most recent research in all areas of medicine.